The Starsky & Hutch Media Archives

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Title: The Starsky & Hutch Media Archives
Creator: Nut Hatch
Date(s): 2002-03
Medium: CDs
Fandom: Starsky & Hutch
External Links:
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The Starsky & Hutch Media Archives was a project by Nut Hatch to scan, archive, and sell the contents of 60 issues (1976 to 1981) of the long-running professional fan magazine called "The Starsky and Hutch Magazine." The CDs also included video clips, music, and slideshows.

The name of this magazine is rarely mentioned in the massive descriptions by Jane of Australia, and she had much to say about copyrights and the "fannish 'in-plugged'" element of this project.

There were six CDs in all and they were created and sold between 2002-03.

Similar fanworks are Digital Dreams: The Professionals and Digital Dreams: Starsky & Hutch.




About 25 years ago in the UK, a series of digest-sized magazines were published, around 60 issues in all, covering the 'golden age' from around 1976 to 1981. They're cover-to-cover color photos, and every word from the popular press of the era. The show was in production, PG and DS were still on their way up, a long way from zenith and the personal suffering that was to come along later. The horizon was blue and the world was sunny. The 60 digest-size magazines covering these five years are now old enough that, realistically, they ought to be packed away in a dark place before they oxidize away! Paper doesn't last forever. But before that happens, something has to be done to archive them.

Over the years I (JJ) have been asked many times ... will I sell them? Nooooo way. Not for any price ... and I've been offered *silly* prices for these little zines. So, will I photocopy them to share them? I looked at that as a proposition; the trouble is, color photos drink black xerox toner like soda. The "real" cost of copying these little zines is about .40 PER PAGE! There's over 2,000 pages, so we're not going to "sneak" them past the copy shop lady! I "talked a deal," best I could get, and was offered a flat .25c per page for the job. That's $525.00 for copy costs ... and black-and-white xeroxes will destroy the photos anyway.

Next, I was asked, would I camera copy the pages?? I have very good camera equipment and used to be a professional photographer a few years ago. I can do this, yes. Cost involved: $900 to make the negatives and one extra set of prints!!!

So, would I *scan* them? Yes, no problem. But shipping the scans on floppies would take over 300 floppy disks, at $1 per disk, plus postage ... and the cost of a new scanner, cuz mine will wear itself out in the course of the job! (Would I OCR the text? No can do. That job would take over 1,000 hours ... I don't have the time to give you, guys, sorry).

So how about shipping on ZIP disks? Yup. You'll need five zip disks, and they cost $25 each. That's still $125, though we're getting closer to an acceptable price.

And then, about six weeks ago, something wonderful happened ... the chance came our way to get (you guessed it) a CD burner.

And here we are! So, guys. [1]

Disclaimers and Copyright

This disk, and others in this series, are fannish works, by, for and to a large extent, about fans. No infringement of copyright is intended; no claim of copyright is made for any image drawn from STARSKY AND HUTCH or THE STARSKY AND HUTCH MAGAZINE.

This disk is an "unplugged" project: it is intended as an archive, purely and simply, to rescue and preserve old, delicate and irreplaceable paperwork. The pages of THE STARSKY AND HUTCH MAGAZINE have been faithfully imaged, without alteration or omission, save for necessary photo-restoration where the original pages are damaged by time and use. Such copyrights as appeared in the magazines are faithfully reproduced within the pages of the magazines, as part of the images.

No copyright is claimed over the video materials used to introduce and illustrate this disk. The video clips are used herein as part of an "unplugged" fannish project, solely for the entertainment of fans, and the copyright of Twentieth Century Fox is acknowledged.

No copyright is claimed over the textual materials depicted as images drawn from THE STARSKY AND HUTCH MAGAZINE. These materials are archived for their preservation. Accreditation for the individual articles is pending indefinitely, and will be added in future disks, and reprints of this disk, as, and if, credits become available. In fact, on the CD case we, THE ARCHIVISTS, go to great lengths to ASSERT COPYRIGHT ON BEHALF OF THE ORIGINATORS OF THE ORIGINAL MATERIALS.

No copyright is claimed over the music used to accompany the slideshows: the music is drawn from LPs from the 1970s era, and is used as part of the "unplugged" fannish project. No copyright infringement is intended.

The only part of the disk project over which any copyright claim may be made by us, is in the design, layout and composition of the interface. All programming was done in-house.

DIRECTOR is a trademark of Macromedia.

An important part of the archivist's task is crediting the preserved work. And herein lay the problem. Credits. There are almost none in the magazines: the photo sources are never named, and the textual sources, hardly ever. Almost the only credits and copyrights we could ever find within the pages are on various songs as performed by DS. These songs were used by permission in the original magazines, as archived here.

We know that Twentieth Century Fox produced STARSKY AND HUTCH, but many of the pictures are from other productions (DOG POUND SHUFFLE; HOUDINI, and DS's tour of the UK to name a few), and none are cited in the magazines. Scores of feature articles appear. We understand some of them to be reprints of features carried by the US press of the era ... but the magazines carry no sources, no credits.

As the archivists, we're left making assumptions and, after some considerable head-scratching, we came up with this solution:

We are certain of Twentieth Century Fox's copyright on the photographs from S&H;, and these form the bulk of the illustration; we are also certain of the credits on the *editorial* materials printed in each issue of the magazine. Beyond this, we honestly can't do more than guess, so the best accreditation we can devise is as follows:

Photographic materials from STARSKY & HUTCH are copyright by Twentieth Century Fox and we assume they were used by permission in the original publications here archived; editorial content from the magazines is the intellectual property of Steve Marshall, Janet Walker and "others." Further accreditation for individual articles and illustrations will be added to this archive as they become available.

"Here's the Plan"


Yep ... CD series! It's going to take at least six disks to archive everything. We just completed the first one, at about 640MB, and that disk is full to busting, with the first tenissues.

So, the plan is...

We scan the whole 2,250pp (that's a good estimate; actually, I think it's more than that) in full color. We use Macromedia Director to create a view-as-is, on-screen "browser" for the pages, to make them easily accessible to anyone with a Windows machine (See below for "system requirements"). We also combine the bit mapped pages into Adobe Acrobat files, printer-ready, so that you can recreate the magazines, close as can be achieved, on your desktop! And lastly, I will personally go through the bitmaps, crop out every single photo and digitally enhance them, save them to top-quality JPEGs and archive them, so you can have the original photos at your fingertips, for your webpage or any other project that leaps to mind! Then we take the whole thing (on-screen "show," Adobe Acrobat printer-ready files, archived JPEGs ... plus a screensaver or video clips and wallpapers and anything else that will fit on the disk), and we burn it to a CD. We put on a gorgeous label. Put it in a jewel case with a color cover. Wrap it in bubble plastic, and ship it to you.

Now ... according to our "research into what's possible" so far, we can only get 10 issues of the magazine on any one disk, when they're giving it the full archival treatment. We'd rather do it this way than the alternative (which would be to put "pages only" on this disk, then "acrobat printer ready files only" on the next one, and "JPEGs only" on the next one ... that would be hugely confusing and would end up, I'm sure, taking more time. So the plan is to do 10 magazines at a time, cover everything, make every picture and every word available both on-screen (for folks who don't want to, or can't, print them out), and also make it possible to achieve a very close facsimile, for folks who have a good printer and a bottomless supply of color ink/toner. In addition, every image will be digitally enhanced by me (JJ) and archived ... and the leftover space will be filled with wallpapers and video clips.

At the end of the project you'll have six disks ... 2,250pp, about 3,000 photos, about 300,000 words from the popular press of the day, maybe 30mins of .AVI video clips and a half dozen s/h screensavers, and a bundle of "art by Jade" (aka JJ) wallpapers, whatever will fit.

And the first disk is already in the mail at the time of this upload (June 15, 2002)

At this time we're producing the CD for WINDOWS 95 or better. There *will* be a Mac version (similar though not identical to the Windows version) in due course. We can't make a dead-ringer version for Mac because we don't own a Mac, nor the Macromedia software for the Mac platform. Seriously, people, that would cost us over six grand!! And 90% of users are on Windows anyway. However, we can produce something pretty similar, and this will be done as we go along.

[much snipped about technical computer requirements]

Okay ...

Exactly what's on the first disk, and when can a girl order, and how's a girl go about ordering, and how much will it cost??!! [3]

More About

Welcome to an archival project that is long overdue and probably in the nick of time!


The 60 digest-size magazines covering these five years are now old enough that, realistically, they ought to be packed away in a dark place before they oxidize to bits! The copies in our hands are aging ... paper doesn't last forever. But before that happens, something has to be done to archive them, for they won't last much longer. The copies we have are also, being old, showing signs of wear and tear; photo-restoration was sometimes in order, to return these pieces of history to something very close to the as-new condition needed for a good archive.

Our hope is that once these magazines are committed to CD, they will last forever. In another twenty-five years a whole new generation of fans (some of them as yet unborn) will be able to discover the show on DVD (or by that time some form of flash-RAM chip!) and, falling in love with the by-then fifty year old classic, will be able to access the content of the magazines published in 1975, because, through the medium of these disks, they still exist!

The archivist's task is not easy, but we're determined to make a good job of it. These disks are a "salute to the fandom" as much as a "salute to the show," and we would like to offer an especial salute to Steve Marshall, Janet Walker and their crew who, between 1975 and 1981, did the original archival work. Without their efforts there would BE no magic for us, in 2002, to preserve for the future.

Over the years it's been asked many times, would JJ sell these copies? Nooooo way. Not for any price; and *silly* prices were offered. So, could they be photocopied, to be shared around? Would I loan them out, mailing them back and forth across the world, so as to share them? Would I camera copy the pages?? Would I *scan* them? Would I OCR them?

All of these suggestions were made by S&H; fans with one common desire: to have some access, any kind of access, to materials that are rare, irreplaceable and old. No, I wouldn't sell them; I couldn't bring myself to entrust them to the mail over and over! The task of camera copying them was too huge to be contemplated; the cost of photocopying was prohibitive, and ... black xerox copies of glorious color pics??? That left scanning. Hmmm.

The interest not only in the classic show, but also in these quarter century old magazines is phenomenal. It's a credit to the show and the actors -- also, to fandom itself; and not least to the talents and enthusiasm of the people who published these magazines so long ago.

As archivists, we set ourselves a challenge: rescue the magazines and render them to a form in which the average fan can access them as readily as if they are on the library shelf. Preserve the magazines forever ... and in their original form, including color, layout, everything. NOTHING was to be changed. The object here is perfect preservation.

[much snipped] [4]

More, More About

The release of SHACD #3 this week marks the halfway point in a disk series that has been a tremendous experience for us. We've learned a lot in this last six months or so (and we were pretty well "boned up" on the software skills needed to do this work even when we began, after a number of other projects). All life is a learning experience, and SHMACD especially so. I'm flat-out amazed by the things Dave is doing with the Macromedia stuff.

Wedged in between SHMACD #2 and #3 we did a double CD set for "The Professionals," which enabled us to use a whole lot of techniques that we can't put into the SHMACD disks (whimper), and there was also SHOOT THE MOON, which came out in time for ShareCon and has been very well received.

So what are we planning now? First: some sleep! Seriously! Then ... there are three more SHMACD disks to go before we start to explore the wonderful world of digital music videos. We have the software to do specal effects as well as video and audio editing, and it's a load of fun as well as hard work. We'd also like to do a disk that celebrates the boys, PMG and DS, focusing on lots of their other work, rather than "just" S&H.; We have a good collection of videos at our fingertips, and um ... !! [5]


The Six CDs

CD 1 (March 2002)

  • CD 2 (2002): CD 2
  • CD 3 (October 2002): CD 3
  • CD 4 (January 2003): CD 4
  • CD 5 (August 2003): CD 5
  • CD 6 (December 2003): CD 6

CD 1 (March 2002)

So what's on this first CD??! As you read in the preceeding pages, we assigned ourselves the task of the archivist to save some history: this paper is around 25 years old, older than some folks enjoying this disk! Take a moment to see how we figured out what we could cram into a CD, and how we decided to break up a project that's eventually going to be 6-CDs! On this first one you'll find...

650MB of goodies on a high-quality CD-R
full color cover and disk label
ISSUES #1 - #10
around 300 JPEG images
approx. 15mins of AVI videoclips
20mins of slideshows and animations
around 15mins of music
10 printer-ready Adobe Acrobatfiles
a smooth Macromedia interface for PC

Next, you want to know what the pricetag is for a disk of this quality, and the news is all good. We can STILL do the first disk for US$10 + shipping ... which makes it US$13* all up, including insured airmail and the "handling fees" for your use of either credit card or PayPal. (Sorry: if you need to order on a check or in cash, there's a currency conversion fee of an extra US$5. For more information, please see the shopping page for compete info.

  • The second disk is US$14, due to higher-than-expected production costs. [6]

CD 4 (January 2003)

Here it is at last ... a couple of weeks late after the holiday season: we, uh, had to recover! But this issue of SHMACD is better than ever. We have the next 10 issues of the classic magazine, plus loads more of everything, videos, soundbytes, photos, and -- a first from us -- a very special music video. The theme is "partnership," and it's set to David Soul's "Don't Give Up On Us."